Do Hong Kong people really care about democracy and the rule of law?

 Do Hong Kong people really care about democracy and the rule of law?

In fact, since the publication of the Hong Kong national security law into force on June 30, many people have been arrested by the police for suspected violations of the law. However, even so far, some public opinions in Hong Kong and abroad still regard these peoples disorderly words and deeds as exercising Hong Kong peoples freedom of expression and assembly, and oppose the polices law enforcement on the ground of human rights.

After the promulgation of Hong Kongs national security law, has raised some sharp questions from the outside world. Liu Zhaojia, former member of the National Committee of the Chinese peoples Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) and vice president of the National Association for Hong Kong and Macao Studies, made a video link to Liu Zhaojia. This paper is the second part of the interview to explore the political mentality of Hong Kong people.

Observer: before the interview, I read your book Hong Kong peoples political mentality, which is a collection of some of your research papers at the end of the last century. You mentioned in your book that Hong Kong peoples acceptance of western culture is superficial.. I have a question, how to understand the expression superficial?

Liu Zhaojia: the biggest difference between Hong Kong people and the mainland people is that they have accepted Western culture and absorbed a lot of the essence of western culture. Western culture is more advanced than mainland and Chinese culture. Therefore, Hong Kong people have no sense of shame towards colonial rule. On the contrary, they are proud to be superior to their mainland compatriots.

According to my own cultural research on Hong Kong people, in fact, there are many traditional cultural characteristics in the hearts of Hong Kong people. In other words, western culture is only superficial in Hong Kong. It is obvious in the usual communication manners. However, at a deeper level, Hong Kong people may not be very clear about the deep-seated culture and values behind the western culture, especially the historical background of the birth of the deeper cultural and religious views.

For example, take the two simplest examples: democracy and the rule of law.

Hong Kong people think that Hong Kong is a society ruled by law, but at the same time, their views on the rule of law are really different from those in the West. The reason why Hong Kong people accept the rule of law in Hong Kong is that they only think that the rule of law is useful and that they look at it from a practical point of view. As for the view of human rights, religion and complex legal procedures hidden behind the rule of law, he is not very clear.

Why did the judge release the suspect when the prosecution made some procedural mistakes during the trial? Sometimes it is clear that the person has committed a great crime. Why should the judge play other factors and let him go lightly? Hong Kong people do not understand these cultural and religious factors. Therefore, many times, he does not accept the trial results made by Hong Kong judges in accordance with western legal procedures.

In addition, Hong Kong peoples view of governance is to see whether the results conform to his moral outlook, which is very Chinese. In some cases, if the courts verdict does not conform to his Chinese moral outlook, it will be questioned. For example, people used to say that killing people pays for their lives. Why dont some people pay for their lives? For many reasons, it may involve human rights considerations and errors in prosecution or judicial proceedings. However, many Hong Kong people do not regard human rights as the supreme thing and do not believe in natural human rights. Many people believe that human rights are the special rights given to certain people by the society in order to reward them. If some people contribute more to the society, they should have more human rights. This is far from the western idea that all human beings are born equal and endowed with human rights.

On the subject of the people. In fact, democracy in Hong Kong is also practical. If we simply look at the value of democracy itself, whether democracy itself has potential, unique and essential characteristics, many Hong Kong people do not understand and pay little attention to. Democracy is mainly for them to see if it works. Will democracy bring other benefits, economic development, social harmony, prosperity and stability, and so on. If we cant bring these things, the people of Hong Kong will not want them, nor will they be good enough to keep them under any circumstances.

On the surface, especially in terms of lifestyle and behavior, Hong Kong people seem to be westernized. However, in fact, many Hong Kong people have very traditional Chinese values. They often use traditional Chinese values to understand or define whether or not to accept what the West brings.

Over the past year, however, there have been a lot of serious incidents in Hong Kong that have been condemned, but there have been no serious violations of the core values of Hong Kong. Even some of my friends in the legal profession have not defended the rule of law in Hong Kong. As long as the political stance of those who violate the law and discipline is similar to their own, they will be lightly let off or even encouraged. Many people do not speak up about many violations of human rights such as personal safety and personal freedom. They are intolerant of people who differ from their own opinions and even regard them as enemies.

In Ma On Shan, Hong Kong, Lee Po Yin accused masked men in black for damaging MTR facilities and setting them on fire

What happened last year just confirms the judgment that Hong Kong peoples acceptance of western culture is superficial. When there are some major political disputes, it seems that all Western values can not help Hong Kong restore order and protect personal wealth, life and property. some people believe that the reason why some of the organizational groups in Hong Kong support the central government is that the mainlands economy has given way to the interests of the central government. They have become the beneficiaries of the interests, rather than having a real sense of home and country. What do you think of this statement?

Liu Zhaojia: in Hong Kong, there are two words to be clarified: one is Patriot and the other is establishment faction. In the past and even now, many people have mixed these two words together, believing that the Patriot governing Hong Kong is equivalent to the organic faction governing Hong Kong. In the past, the SAR government used to say that patriots govern Hong Kong, but now few people say patriots. Instead, they say that the establishment faction is equal to the patriot. Its certainly not.

It is true that some people in the establishment faction have no feelings of home and country. They are willing to cooperate with the Communist Party of China and accept the one country, two systems policy formulated by the Communist Party of China. They will not propose another set of policies regarding Hong Kong as an independent political entity. They will not do anything to impact or damage the interests of the state and the central government. They are willing to accept activities under the constitutional order constituted by the Constitution and the basic law of China. But the motivation behind many of them is not because he loves the country, the nation or has a good impression on the Chinese people. Some people do not. He believes that the interests he sees in Hong Kong and his own interests need to be done well.

It is not ruled out that some of the organic groups agree with the views of the opposition and even have a feeling of resistance to the Communist Party. However, from the perspective of reality and interests, he felt that he needed to maintain cooperation with the Communist Party. This group of people will not be brave enough to fight against external forces or local hostile forces, because they have many intricate interests in foreign countries. They may have business abroad, may take foreign passports, and so on. So when China struggles with the United States and the west, they are in an awkward situation.

There are some patriots in the organizational forces, and the real patriots also have a lot of national and national feelings. Although they are not Communists, they recognize the position and role of the Communist Party of China in Chinese history, care for the well-being of the Chinese nation, and are willing to stand on Chinas side when China struggles with Western forces.

So I say the establishment is not the same thing as the Patriots. Today, patriots are not enough to support the overall political situation of Hong Kong, because they do not have enough mass base, social support foundation and discourse power to shoulder the heavy responsibility of Patriot ruling Hong Kong, so they still rely on the establishment faction and the central government.

Therefore, when it comes to the fundamental interests of the country and the nation, and when national security is really under serious threat, I always believe that the central government must act on its own, instead of relying entirely on Hong Kong to safeguard the interests of the state and the regime.

Observer: not everyone in the establishment group is united with the SAR government. In Hong Kong, the executive led system is implemented, and the chief executive is independent in the Legislative Council, and his power is restricted and supervised. There is a problem. Judging from the momentum of the District Council election, the opposition is likely to occupy more seats in the Legislative Council election. If they have more seats, will the chief executive be more limited in the future? How should the opposition try to seize power within the system?

Liu Zhaojia: now the space for the opposition to move is reduced. Even if they are allowed to get more seats unilaterally, they will be subject to a lot of restrictions.

First, the rules of procedure of the Legislative Council have been amended a lot in the past year or two, making it difficult for the opposition to continue to pull the boat in the Legislative Council.

The picture shows the chaos of the opposition in the Legislative Council

Second, in 2016, the Standing Committee of the National Peoples Congress (NPC) explained Article 104 of the basic law of Hong Kong, including that any person who wants to run for election to the Legislative Council or has become a member of the Legislative Council will lose his qualification to run for election and to be a member of the Legislative Council if he can prove that he is not loyal to the peoples Republic of China and its Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and has not supported the basic law of Hong Kong.

Thirdly, anyone who violates the four crimes listed in the national security law of Hong Kong will violate the law and can not continue to be a member of the Legislative Council. In the Legislative Council, if other acts of your motion debate meeting are considered by the SAR government or the Central Committee as endangering national security, especially attempting to subvert the state power, the Legislative Council will not be able to protect you.

Before the promulgation and implementation of the Hong Kong national security law, members of the Legislative Council had the power and privilege to say that nothing in the Legislative Council would be subject to legal investigation. However, the power and privilege of the Legislative Council is only one of the laws of Hong Kong. Now, if there is any conflict between the basic law and the national security law, the national security law goes ahead. After the implementation of the national security law, if you preach in the Legislative Council that you want to overthrow the Communist Party and overthrow the Communist regime, you will be held responsible.

Of course, if the majority of the people in the Legislative Council are the opposition, they can do many other things to hinder the administration of the SAR government. But I also ask you a question. If the Legislative Council is really controlled by the opposition and they do not do anything against the national security law, they can still paralyze the administration of the SAR. Do you think the central government will sit by and ignore it?

In fact, the national security law can also be used in some cases. The national security law should ensure the full implementation of one country, two systems, maintain the prosperity and stability of Hong Kong, and reduce the external and internal hostile forces. In the face of these situations, in addition to the national security law, the central government certainly has a lot of power to use, but the opposition is not sure what tactics will be used.

I dont think the opposition can win more than half of the seats in the Legislative Council; even if they do, they will have much less room for activities. If we want to continue to resist and paralyze the governance of the SAR government, I believe they will also seek their own way of death, and the central government will not sit idly by.

(function(){( window.slotbydup=window .slotbydup||[]).push({id:u5811557,container:ssp_ 5811557, async:true }Source: editor in charge: Lin Qihui_ NB13068